So many good things today! Having two days at Cavaillon means time for fun as well a "business" - the business of medical care - with 85 lively and fun loving children. You'll enjoy the pictures!
The team completed the checks-ups, charting, and whatever treatment of the girls were necessary today, and then turned their attention to the important tasks of bubbles and jump rope. Team members also spent time doing videotaped "interviews" with some of the children to personalize the connection sponsors already feel with these kids even more. Not everyone can visit in person, but hearing kids' voices and their thoughts will be great!
Tomorrow, the team shifts gears from orphanages and a primarily child based clientele at Cavaillon to a community based clinic at Savanne. Savanne is the poorest community in the relatively large city of Cayes, which is 30 minutes away from the guest house. It is so poor that there are no municipal services like hospitals or schools, no running water, and very little employment. No one who can live anywhere else chooses to live in Savanne.
And yet, the hope of the gospel is present. About five years ago, ESMI started a church there, and things started to change. The pervasive voudoo influences started to wane as people heard the gospel of Jesus and began to follow him. One of our medical teams was the first medical care EVER to come to Savanne, and people noticed that they worked "nan nom Jesi", in Jesus' name. This was indeed perplexing and new, and soon the curious residents were attending church services to hear more. Story after story of conversion, changed lives, and soon, modest then noticeable changes in the community life were evident. Still poor, still a fairly dangerous place - but different. Our medical team continued to come every six months, and then the water team came to bring the first clean water to the community. Both efforts spoke loudly to people who literally had been forgotten by their own government and people. Savanne is not exactly "fixed"...but its not as broken. God is at work.
Tomorrow the team will once again bring hope and healing in Jesus' name through medical care, individual prayer with patients, and the continued work on the damaged water system (which by the way, turned out to be not as damaged as was feared - after today's work, it's up and running again! And safely behind walls, with the solar panels up on raised poles.) The medical team is scheduled to spend tomorrow and Thursday in Savanne. There was no team sent to Haiti in February because of the unrest, so the need is even greater than usual.
As you pray for the team, please focus on these requests:
- That the very needy in Savanne, who know the team's time and resources are limited, will be patient and not become panicky or unruly. The team has sent word ahead that they will prioritize children, pregnant moms, and the very sick. Pray that the hopeful patients understand. Fortunately, the team has many friends (several of whom are now leaders in the church) who can handle the crowds.
- For the continued work of the water team. After wrapping up in Savanne pretty quickly tomorrow with some finishing touches and ongoing hygiene training (since clean water does no good if you put it in dirty containers, for instance), they'll travel to Brevet, the next site for a church plant and a water system. They'll scope out the particulars and do some prep work for the next team. When you consider how many lives are lost to dysentery, cholera, and parasites in water, their work is critical to the health and well being of Haitians. We're proud of them, and grateful for the financial sponsors who underwrite the cost of each installation.
- For the children of Cavaillon to to thrive physically and spiritually, and for the necessary sponsorship and underwriting to continue so that they can live in a healthy and safe place.
- Continue to pray for electricity to be available in sufficient quantity and reliability at the guest house. It came on in the middle of the night last night (including AC), and was worked on today so that it came on about 9:30 tonight, but it appears to be held together with spit and gum and glue instead of a a real "fix". The electricity is needed for showers and toilets as well as for lights and phone chargers. After a long, hot day today, its return tonight was cause for celebration by the team!
Sunrise at the guest house this morning
Baby care for the houseparents' baby
We weren't kidding about the kids' teeth!
Please pray for a dentist (or six) to join the team!
Lunch time at Cavailion. What progress...they used to have their meals on their beds.Two meals a day..rice, beans, and protein.
Chicago Friends of Haiti